Capturing Carbon and Conserving Biodiversity

Capturing Carbon and Conserving Biodiversity makes an overwhelming case for the maximum use of carbon sinks, particularly in the developing world. The authors – a distinguished group of ecologists, biologists, conservationists, economists, lawyers, community and tribal specialists, market-makers, financial specialists, climatologists, resource managers, atmospheric scientists, project developers and corporate fund managers – reveal in persuasive detail the benefits of a market-based system of reducing and sequestering carbon. Combined with emissions trading, this approach will maximize benefit to the rural poor and indigenous people, while promoting habitat preservation and biodiversity, watershed protection, and the mitigation of global warming. Such a strategy is the lowest cost approach, and the one most likely to succeed where central planning has failed.

Harnessing Markets for Biodiversity: Towards Conservation and Sustainable Use

This book aims to provide a conceptual framework and examples of successful initiatives of market creation that acts as an incentive for biodiversity conservation and sustainable use. The conceptual framework used is based on the principles of public and private goods. These are measured according to the extent of 'rivalry and excludability' they possess. Rivalry is defined as the extent to which one person's consumption depletes others' ability to use it and excludability as the extent to which people can be excluded from the resource, e.g. by charging for entry.

Madagascar's Experience with Swapping Debt for the Environment

Madagascar is one of only a few countries in the world that has had experience with both commercial and bilateral debt-for-nature swaps and has also committed to allocate a portion of HIPC debt relief savings to the environmental sector. A case study describes Madagascar's experience.

SRI 2003 Report on Socially Responsible Investing Trends in the United States

Socially and environmentally responsible investing in the United States has proven remarkably robust during 2001 and 2002 despite sluggish market conditions that have resulted in a downturn in assets in the wider investment universe. Most notably, socially screened portfolios counted by this Report grew seven percent, while the broader universe of professionally managed portfolios fell four percent.

Do Stock Markets Penalise Environment-Unfriendly Behaviour?

A growing body of research suggests that capital markets react to environmental news and thus create incentives for pollution control in both developed and emerging market economies. The use of the market as a regulatory mechanism may be particularly important in developing countries where monitoring and enforcement capabilities are limited. A link between stock prices and firms' environmental track record provides an incentive for firms to participate in voluntary programmes to improve environmental quality.

A New Approach to Financing Protected Areas

In this short position paper, CCIF discusses two principle ideas: One, the shortage of funding for protected areas is not caused by a lack of conservation capital. It is principally caused by a lack of capacity in the field to accommodate such capital. And two, this capacity cannot be created by impromptu partnerships between existing conservation organizations. It must be engineered by a professional, neutral, third-party
management entity which assures funders the required accountability, control, flexibility and transparency.

The Economics of Worldwide Coral Reef Degradation

This report outlines the importance that coral reefs have in social, biological and economic terms and argues that the economic losses ot be borne by poor global reef management outweigh the costs.

The Wealth of Nature: how mainstream economics has failed the environment

Virtually all large-scale damage to the global environment is caused by economic activities, and the vast majority of economic planners in both business and government coordinate these activities on the basis of guidelines and prescriptions from neoclassical economic theory. In this hard-hitting book, Robert Nadeau demonstrates that the claim that neoclassical economics is a science comparable to the physical sciences is totally bogus and that our failure to recognize and deal with this fact constitutes the greatest single barrier to the timely resolution of the crisis in the global environment. Nadeau makes a convincing case that the myth that neoclassical economic theory is a science has blinded us to the fact that there is absolutely no basis in this theory for accounting for the environmental impacts of economic activities or for positing viable economic solutions to environmental problems. The unfortunate result is that the manner in which we are now coordinating global economic activities is a program for ecological disaster, and we may soon arrive at the point where massive changes in the global environment will threaten the lives of billions of people. To avoid this prospect, Nadeau argues that we must develop and implement an environmentally responsible economic theory and describes how this can be accomplished.

Ecoagriculture: Strategies to Feed the World and Conserve Wild Biodiversity

Although food-production systems for the world's rural poor typically have had devastating effects on the planet's wealth of genes, species, and ecosystems, that need not be the case in the future. In Ecoagriculture, two of the world's leading experts on conservation and development examine the idea that agricultural landscapes can be designed more creatively to take the needs of human populations into account while also protecting, or even enhancing, biodiversity. They present a thorough overview of the innovative concept of "ecoagriculture" – the management of landscapes for both the production of food and the conservation of wild biodiversity.

Brief Overview of Carbon Sequestration Economics and Policy

The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the issues and challenges involved in analyzing the costs and program design for US policies dealing with forest carbon sequestration. Although many of the issues are couched in terms of implementing a US carbon sequestration program, many apply equally well to the design of an international program.

The first section of the paper examines some of the pitfalls of comparing the results of carbon sequestration cost studies and suggests some simple ways which analysts could make their results more useful. The second section of the paper reviews issues related to the implementation of a carbon sequestration program, including which policy tools are available and which have received the most attention, some of the challenges for using those policy tools, and one alternative that has received little attention, but may become necessary. The final section of the paper provides conclusions."

Biodiversity and Disease Risk: the Case of Lyme Disease

Dr. Ostfeld's studies suggest that two seemingly unrelated topics — biodiversity and human disease — might be more closely intertwined than previously thought, at least in the case of Lyme disease. After trapping and counting animals that coexist with the white-footed mouse, his team reached the following conclusion: the greater the relative abundance of non-mouse hosts, the lower the percentage of Borrelia -infected ticks.
Ecologists have known for years that when forested landscapes are carved up, biodiversity decreases. In small forest fragments, the white-footed mouse population skyrockets, probably due to the loss of their predators and competitors. Meanwhile, the absence of diversity removes the natural checks on Borrelia transmission provided by other animal species. As a result, Dr. Ostfeld's group sees a dramatic rise in infected nymphs. 'The ticks have nothing but mice to feed on, but they have a lot of mice.

Bear Creek- Mill Branch Mitigation Bank

The Bear Creek- Mill Branch Mitigation Bank is a 145-acre site constructed in 2001. The site was restored from ditched and drained crop land to a Cypress-Tupelo Swamp and Bottomland Hardland Forest. This restoration was performed by Restoration Systems.

North River-Ward Creek Mitigation Bank

North River is the 360-acre mitigation portion of a larger restoration project organized by Restoration Systems, Tanglewood Farms and the North Carolina Coastal Federation. The mitigation bank provides credit for wetland impacts in White Oak River basin and parts of Pamlico Sound.

North River-Ward Creek Mitigation Bank

North River is the 360-acre mitigation portion of a larger restoration project organized by Restoration Systems, Tanglewood Farms and the North Carolina Coastal Federation. The mitigation bank provides credit for wetland impacts in White Oak River basin and parts of Pamlico Sound.

Marsh Resources Pott Creek Wetland Mitigation Bank

The Marsh Resources Pott Creek Wetland Mitigation Bank is a 74-acre site composed of forested wetland and stream restoration built for the North Carolina Department of Transportation for future road projects in the Catawba River Watershed. The site was previously used as a cattle pasture. Existing ditches were filled and a more natural stream channel was excavated for the site. This site was remediated by Marsh Resources, Inc.

Julie J. Metz Wetlands Bank

the Julie J. Metz Wetlands Bank is a 227-acre mitigation project that created 19.1 credits of nontidal freshwater wetlands. This remediation consists of forested wetlands, emergent marsh and shrub wetlands. A trail, boardwalks and an observation blind provide public recreation. This site was mitigated by Wetland Studies and Solutions, Inc.

Kimball Island Mitigation Bank

Kimball Island is a 109-acre riparian restoration mitigation bank project at the confluence of the Sacramento and San Joaquin Rivers. This project was designed to re-establish the natural slough hydrology to the island. The project was undertaken by Wildlands Inc. and compliments local, state, and federal efforts to restore ecological integrity to the Delta.

Rancho Jamul Mitigation Bank

The Rancho Jamul mitigation bank is approximately 150 acres of riparian and wetland habitat on a 3700-acre preserve site identified in the San Diego Multiple Species Conservation Program as an important biological resource area. This project involves the restoration of two creeks that have been severely degraded by grazing practices. The project is owned by Wildlands Inc.

Wetlands Projects Funded by the Clean Water State Revolving Fund.

This document provides brief descriptions of wetlands projects funded by the Clean Water State Revolving Fund. The project cases include wetland purchase, construction, reconstruction, non-point source protection, conservation easement purchase, and sustainable agriculture education. The project descriptions include costs as well as grant and repayment information.

Forest owners investigate nature-based tourism

A recent family forestry workshop, offered by the University of Idaho Extension Services, brought together family forest owners and a number of forestry consultants to explore ecotourism possibilities. Participants believe nature-based tourism businesses can be long-term sustainable propositions.

Meadowlands Mitigation Bank

The Meadowlands Mitigation Bank is a 206-acre inter-tidal marsh restoration site on the Hackensack River. Intensive development and mosquito ditching degraded the site. Mitigation credit was gained from the removal of invasive reeds and the restoration of an intertidal, estuarine island/channel/mudflat marsh ecosystem. Marsh Resources, Inc. developed this mitigation bank.

Butterfield Road Wetland Bank

The Butterfield Road wetland mitigation bank is an 80-acre site permitted, constructed, and planted in 1999. The site was previously a cornfield with a drainage ditch running through it and consists of upland areas and hydric soils. It is owned by Libertyville Township and was developed by Land and Water Resources, Inc.

Ferson Creek Wetland Mitigation Bank.

The Ferson Creek wetland mitigation bank is a 92-acre site owned by Kane County Development Corporation and developed by Land and Water Resources, Inc in 1996. The meanders of Ferson Creek were restored and the old channelized bed was filled. This site is adjacent to a residential area.

Panther Island Mitigation Bank

The Panther Island wetland mitigation bank is a 2778-acre site contiguous with portions of the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary and CREW SOR lands. Over 300 acres of pastures have been restored to herbaceous freshwater marsh wetlands. When completed, this project will generate 934 mitigation credits. This site is owned and operated by Wetlandsbank Inc.

Lake Station Wetland Mitigation Bank

The Lake Station wetland mitigation bank is a 202-acre site enveloped by Lake Erie Land Company and J.F.New & Associates. Restoration activities began in 1998 and included the removal of over 31,000 linear feet of subsurface tile, plugging of interior ditch and exotic control. An agreement is in place for the transfer of the property to the National Park Service.

North Carolina's Ecosystem Enhancement Program

Even before Federal Highway Administration’s focus on ecosystem conservation as part of its vital few
goals, the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) had begun to examine how and where
compensatory mitigation was being implemented in North Carolina. Over the last four years, NCDOT,
the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (NCDENR), and the United States
Army Corps of Engineers – Wilmington District (USACE) have partnered to redesign the mitigation
process with one goal in mind: to create a compensatory mitigation program that delivers guaranteed
environmental benefits. The result of these efforts is the Ecosystem Enhancement Program (EEP). Rather
than focusing on individual highway project impacts, the EEP concept revolves around watershed plans
and considers cumulative impacts associated with a given watershed. Accordingly, the EEP provides
cumulative mitigation for cumulative impacts. It was clear from the start that EEP was going to change
fundamentally the goals, approach, and structure of providing mitigation in North Carolina. While the
mitigation experts knew how the mitigation process needed to change, they lacked expertise in how to
manage that change. Not surprisingly, this has presented several hurdles that the sponsoring agencies are
still trying to scale today. As implementation moves forward, many valuable lessons are being learned,
which are laying the groundwork for successful change.

Markets and Biodiversity

In this report, Heal reviews the nature of biodiversity as an economic commodity, and discusses the extent to which, and mechanisms via which, markets can be used to conserve biodiversity.

Biodiversity Prospecting: Shopping the Wilds Is Not the Key to Conservation

Resources for the Future (RFF) research on biodiversity prospecting indicates that biodiversity may be important for any number of commercial, ecological, esthetic, ethical or even spiritual reasons. However, when it comes to commercial prospecting among natural sources for new products, the value of biodiversity is not as high as some conservationists might suppose. It is therefore necessary to develop more workable incentives for conservation.